Top songwriter collaborating with Kiwi artists has special praise for Lorde

She was rubbing shoulders with Beyoncé and Katy Perry at the Grammys last week.

But for the next five days, American writer Emily Warren is collaborating with Kiwi artists at Auckland's Roundhead Studios.

For the second year running, SongHubs has brought four international music writers to Auckland for a week-long workshop.

Warren's work on The Chainsmokers’ Don't Let Me Down earned them a Grammy for Best Dance Recording.

"It was crazy going to the Grammys for the first time and winning. It was just totally surreal," she told 1 NEWS.

"I was just shocked [when I saw Beyoncé]. I was five feet away from her at one point. That's actually crazy."

Warren also had special praise for Lorde, who released a teaser yesterday.

"She's amazing. An amazing lyricist and just such a cool perspective. I wonder how all the success affects the creative process, I'm really interested to see that."



New play based on The Simpsons opens in Auckland

A new show has opened in Auckland, and it’s based on The Simpsons.

Called Mr Burns, the Silo Theatre play features some well-known Kiwi performers, such as Ana Scotney from The Breaker Upperers and Joel Tobeck whose list of work includes Sons of Anarchy and Shortland Street.

Written by Anne Washburn, the story begins with an untold apocalyptic event, and how the recollection of the famous Simpsons episode Cape Feare - where Sideshow Bob tries to kill Bart - helps bind those left alive.

The message is centred around the importance of storytelling and holding onto cultural traditions.

"Something can grow into something bigger, as stories get told and things get changed," said director and life-long The Simpsons fan Oliver Driver.

"What binds us together are stories, legend, myths and the beginning of them and how they can shift and change over time, and the necessity of stories for our survival," Scotney said.

The play has previously been done in the US, UK and Australia, but this is the first time it’s been performed for a New Zealand audience.

Tobeck, who hasn’t done any theatre work for 15 years, says the show is the full package.

"It has the drama, the music, the dance and the grandness of The Simpsons,” he said.

The show is on at Q Theatre in Rangatira until the end of the month.

Mr Burns is on at the Q Theatre in Rangatira and features some well-known Kiwi performers including Ana Scotney from The Breaker Upperers and Joel Tobeck from Sons of Anarchy. Source: 1 NEWS


Rapper Mac Miller 'dead for hours' before emergency services arrived

Mac Miller's dead body reportedly lay undiscovered for hours before police and paramedics arrived at his house.

The 26-year-old rapper's body was discovered by police and paramedics in the bedroom of his San Fernando Valley home around midday on Friday (local time), but sources told TMZ it was clear he had passed away from an apparent overdose long before they arrived.

The night before Miller was discovered, he had had friends over to the house to hang out, and they left in the early hours of the Friday morning, with police revealing no one has come forward to say they had seen him alive after that night.

A call to emergency services said the Self Care hitmaker had suffered a cardiac arrest, but it's believed that the person who found him may not have realised he was already dead.

It was previously claimed Miller's California home had been "swept clean" so there would be no evidence of drug use.

Police searching for clues were said to have found only a small amount of white powder at the property.

American rapper Mac Miller dies age 26.
American rapper Mac Miller dies age 26. Source: Bang Showbiz

Earlier this week, the rapper's body was released to his family after an autopsy on his remains was completed, though an official cause of death has not yet been confirmed.

Los Angeles County coroner's spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said: "The autopsy was completed and a cause of death has been deferred pending additional tests. His body has been released."

A cause of death won't be announced until test results are released, and that could take anything from a few weeks to months, the spokesperson confirmed.

Now Miller's body has been released, his funeral will be able to take place.

Though it's currently unclear when that will happen, the Dang! star was raised in the Jewish faith, where it is preferred to have burial take place in as short an interval of time after death as possible.

FILE - In this July 13, 2013, file photo, Rapper Mac Miller performs on his Space Migration Tour at Festival Pier in Philadelphia. Los Angeles County coroner’s spokeswoman Sarah Ardalani said Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, that investigators have performed the autopsy and released the Miller's body to the family, but a cause will not be announced until the results of toxicology tests that can take weeks or months. Miller was found dead in his Los Angeles home last week. (Photo by Owen Sweeney/Invision/AP, File)
Rapper Mac Miller performs on his Space Migration Tour at Festival Pier in Philadelphia. Source: Associated Press

TODAY'S
FEATURED STORIES

From remand home to rap – young Dunedin men using rap to turn their lives around

Two young Dunedin men are using rap music to turn their lives around.

Cleveland and Hoepo had a troubled start to life and recently spent time in a remand home.

However, with the help of social worker Nan, the pair changed their mindset and are determined to rap themselves to a better future.

Seven Sharp has their inspiring story in the video above.

After a troubled start to life, Cleveland and Hoepo have changed their mindset around and are determined to rap themselves to a better future. Source: Seven Sharp


Woo! Wrestling legend Ric Flair ties the knot at 69

Ric Flair has married Wendy Barlow after six years of dating.

The wrestling legend tied the knot with fiancee Wendy Barlow today in a low-key ceremony at a resort in North Florida.

According to TMZ, fellow WWE icon The Undertaker was among the guests, while RAW star Dolph Ziggler walked Wendy down the aisle.

The 69-year-old wrestler donned a custom suit for the occasion and came in for the ceremony to the sound of Offset and Metro Boomin's track Ric Flair Drip.

Ahead of the ceremony, Ric had posted his excitement on Twitter.

He wrote: "It's Going To Be A Wonderful WOOOOO Wednesday!"

Wendy - who was previously known to wrestling fans as Fifi the French Maid - is Ric's fifth wife and the couple have been together for six years.

The wedding comes a year after Ric was placed into an induced coma for 11 days after being rushed to hospital with stomach pains that were later diagnosed as the early stages of kidney failure and congestive heart failure due to years of alcohol abuse and he later praised Wendy for her support during his medical ordeal.

He said: "Wendy stayed with me in the ICU every day. She got what's called ... seriously, ICU psychosis, and she never left my room for 11 days."

Ric also claimed he "couldn't walk" after he was brought out of his coma, and was sent to a physical rehabilitation centre where he had to learn the basic function.

He added: "And then when I got released from the hospital they checked me into place, because I had to learn how to walk again, I couldn't walk, I couldn't do anything. I couldn't twist the top off a Gatorade bottle or open a diet Coke. I lost 43 lbs. So they put me into a physical rehab, not an alcohol rehab. I'd already done that gig, and that really worked."

MIAMI, FL - FEBRUARY 22:  Ric Flair (R) attends Univision's 30th Edition Of "Premio Lo Nuestro A La Musica Latina" at American Airlines Arena on February 22, 2018 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images)
Ric Flair and Wendy Barlow. Source: Bang Showbiz


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